Short Readings for Travellers


Moses addressed all Israel and said: When your children ask you in time to come, ‘What is the meaning of the decrees and the statutes and the ordinances that the Lord our God has commanded you?’ then you shall say to your children, ‘We were Pharaoh’s slaves in Egypt, but the Lord brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand. The Lord displayed before our eyes great and awesome signs and wonders against Egypt, against Pharaoh and all his household. He brought us out from there in order to bring us in, to give us the land that he promised on oath to our ancestors. Then the Lord commanded us to observe all these statutes, to fear the Lord our God, for our lasting good, so as to keep us alive, as is now the case. If we diligently observe this entire commandment before the Lord our God, as he has commanded us, we will be in the right.’ Deuteronomy 6. 20-25

Therefore, since we are justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have obtained access to this grace in which we stand; and we boast in our hope of sharing the glory of God. And not only that, but we also boast in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us. Romans 5. 1-5

The eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. When they saw him, they worshipped him; but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.’ Matthew 28. 16-20 MONDAYS

Who has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand and marked off the heavens with a span, enclosed the dust of the earth in a measure and weighed the mountains in scales and the hills in a balance¿ Even the nations are like a drop from a bucket and are accounted as dust on the scales; see, he takes up the isles like fine dust. Lebanon would not provide fuel enough, nor are its animals enough for a burnt offering. All the nations are as nothing before him; they are accounted by him as less than nothing and emptiness. To whom, then, will you liken God, or what likeness compare with him¿ Isaiah 40. 12, 15-18

All who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received a spirit of adoption. When we cry, ‘Abba! Father!’ it is that very Spirit bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God and, if children, then heirs, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ – if, in fact, we suffer with him so that we may also be glorified with him. Romans 8. 14-17

After three days, the parents of Jesus found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. And all who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers. When his parents saw him they were astonished; and his mother said to him, ‘Child, why have you treated us like this¿ Look, your father and I have been searching for you in great anxiety.’ He said to them, ‘Why were you searching for me¿ Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?’ But they did not understand what he said to them. Then he went down with them and came to Nazareth and was obedient to them. His mother treasured all these things in her heart. Luke 2. 46-51 TUESDAYS

The Lord is exalted, he dwells on high; he filled Zion with justice and righteousness; he will be the stability of your times, abundance of salvation, wisdom and knowledge; the fear of the Lord is Zion’s treasure. Isaiah 33. 5-6

I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory about to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the children of God; for the creation was subjected to futility, not of its own will but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and will obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. We know that the whole creation has been groaning in labour pains until now; and not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the first-fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly while we wait for adoption, the redemption of our bodies. For in hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what is seen¿ But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience. Romans 8. 18-25 In those days, John the Baptist appeared in the wilderness of Judea, proclaiming, ‘Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.’ This is the one of whom the prophet Isaiah spoke when he said, ‘The voice of one crying out: In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.’ Then the people of Jerusalem and all Judea were going out to him, and all the region along the Jordan, and they were baptised by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins. Matthew 3. 1-6 WEDNESDAYS

Hear the word of the Lord, O nations, and declare it in the coastlands far away; say, ‘He who scattered Israel will gather him and will keep him as a shepherd a flock.’ For the Lord has ransomed Jacob and has redeemed him from hands too strong for him. They shall come and sing aloud on the height of Zion and they shall be radiant over the goodness of the Lord, over the grain, the wine and the oil, and over the young of the flock and the herd; their life shall become like a watered garden and they shall never languish again. Then shall the young women rejoice in the dance and the young men and the old shall be merry. I will turn their mourning into joy, I will comfort them and give them gladness for sorrow. Jeremiah 31. 10-13

We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose. For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the first-born within a large family. And those whom he predestined he also called; and those whom he called he also justified; and those whom he justified he also glorified. What then are we to say about these things¿ If God is for us, who is against us¿ He who did not withhold his own Son, but gave him up for all of us, will he not with him also give us everything else¿ Romans 8. 28-32

In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through him and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being in him was life and the life was the light of all people. And the Word became flesh and lived among us and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth. John 1. 1-3, 14 THURSDAYS

Thus says the Lord: ‘Heaven is my throne and the earth is my footstool; what is the house which you would build for me and what is the place of my rest¿ All these things my hand has made and so all these things are mine’, says the Lord. ‘But this is the one to whom I will look, the one who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at my word.’ Isaiah 66. 1, 2

Who will separate us from the love of Christ¿ Will hardship, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword¿ As it is written: For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep to be slaughtered. No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8. 35-39

Jesus said, ‘I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and of earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and the intelligent and have revealed them to infants; yes, Father, for such was your gracious will. All things have been handed over to me by my Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.’ Matthew 11. 25-27 FRIDAYS

Then David blessed the Lord in the presence of all the assembly; David said: ‘Blessèd are you, O Lord, the God of our ancestor Israel, forever and ever. Yours, O Lord, are the greatness, the power, the glory, the victory and the majesty; for all that is in the heavens and on the earth is yours; yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and you are exalted as head over all. Riches and honour come from you, and you rule over all. In your hand are power and might, and it is in your hand to make great and to give strength to all. And now, our God, we give thanks to you and praise your glorious name.’ 1 Chronicles 29. 10-13

Apart from the law, the righteousness of God has been disclosed, and is attested by the law and the prophets, the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction, since all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God; they are now justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a sacrifice of atonement by his blood, effective through faith. He did this to show his righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over the sins previously committed; it was to prove at the present time that he himself is righteous and that he justifies the one who has faith in Jesus. Romans 3. 21-26

It was about noon, and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon, while the sun’s light failed; and the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Then Jesus, crying with a loud voice, said, ‘Father, into your hands I commend my spirit.’ Having said this he breathed his last. When the centurion saw what had taken place, he praised God and said, ‘Certainly, this man was innocent.’ Luke 23. 44-47 SATURDAYS

Turn to me and be saved, all the ends of the earth! For I am God, and there is no other. By myself I have sworn, from my mouth has gone forth in righteousness a word that shall not return: To me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear. Only in the Lord, it shall be said of me, are righteousness and strength; all who were incensed against him shall come to him and be ashamed. In the Lord all the offspring of Israel shall triumph and glory. Isaiah 45. 22-25

When the goodness and loving-kindness of God our Saviour appeared, he saved us, not because of any works of righteousness that we had done, but according to his mercy, through the water of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit. This Spirit he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Saviour, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life. Titus 3. 4-7

There was a good and righteous man named Joseph who, though a member of the council, had not agreed to their plan and action. He came from the Jewish town of Arimathea, and he was waiting expectantly for the kingdom of God. This man went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. Then he took it down, wrapped it in a linen cloth, and laid it in a rock-hewn tomb where no one had ever been laid. It was the day of Preparation, and the sabbath was beginning. The women who had come with him from Galilee followed, and they saw the tomb and how his body was laid. Then they returned, and prepared spices and ointments. On the sabbath they rested, according to the commandment. Luke 23. 50-56 ON FEAST DAYS THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

In the sixth month, the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a town in Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. And he came to her and said, ‘Greetings, favoured one! The Lord is with you.’ But she was perplexed by his words and pondered what sort of greeting this might be. The angel said to her, ‘Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favour with God. And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus. The Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be holy; he will be called the Son of God.’ Then Mary said, ‘Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word.’ Luke 1. 26-31, 35-38a APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS

Jesus said to his disciples, ‘Beware, for you will be handed over to councils; and you will be beaten in synagogues; and you will stand before governors and rulers because of me, as a testimony to them. And the good news must first be proclaimed to all nations. When they bring you to trial and hand you over, do not worry beforehand about what you are to say; but say whatever is given you at that time, for it is not you who speak but the Holy Spirit.’ Mark 13. 9-11 MARTYRS

Jesus said, ‘Very truly I tell you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains just a single grain; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. Those who love their life lose it, and those who hate their life in this world will keep it for eternal life. Whoever serves me must follow me, and where I am, there will my servant be also. Whoever serves me, the Father will honour.’ John 12. 24-26 TEACHERS & CONFESSORS

Jesus said, ‘Everyone who hears my words and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock. The rain fell down, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on rock.’ Matthew 7. 24-25 BISHOPS

Keep watch over yourselves and over all the flock, of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God that he obtained with the blood of his own Son. I commend you to God and to the message of his grace, a message that is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all who are sanctified. Acts 21. 28, 32 RELIGIOUS

Whatever gains I had, these I have come to regard as loss because of Christ. More than that, I regard everything as loss because of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the sharing of his sufferings by becoming like him in his death, if somehow I may attain the resurrection from the dead. Philippians 3. 7-8a, 10-11 MISSIONARIES – As Apostles & Evangelists, above ANY SAINT

We do not proclaim ourselves, we proclaim Jesus Christ as Lord and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. For it is the God who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness’, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. 2 Corinthians 4. 5-6 FOR UNITY

Jesus said, ‘Father, protect in your name those you have given me, so that they may be one as we are one. Sanctify them in your truth; your word is truth. I ask not only on behalf of these but also for those who believe in me through their word, that they may all be one.’ John 17. 11b, 17, 20-21a FOR PEACE

Jesus said, ‘You have heard it said, "You shall love your neighbour and hate your enemy¢, but I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be children of your Father in heaven; for if you love those who love you, what reward do you have¿ And if you greet only your brothers and sisters, what more are you doing than others¿ So be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.’ Matthew 5. 43-45a, 46-48